The Guild makes recommendations for FP9 'Spreading Excellence’ agenda
On 7 March 2018, the Guild of European Research Universities published its policy paper on widening participation "Mind the Gap - Supporting Excellence across Europe in the 9th Framework Programme".
The motivation for this paper is to recommend effective measures to recognise, encourage and strengthen the excellence that exists in lower-performing regions, and measures to increase their capacity and support their collaborations with the best researchers throughout Europe. According to the Guild, policies to overcome the research and innovation gap should focus on facilitating meaningful research collaborations, supporting mobility in all directions, creating new, durable and sustainable networks, and optimising the use of research infrastructures.
The Guild is making the following recommendations for the FP9 ‘Spreading Excellence’ agenda:
- Ensure synergies between FP9 and the European Structural and Innovation Funds (ESIF), and dedicate a higher proportion of ESIF to R&I.
- Support bottom-up transnational networks and learn from existing regional initiatives that have the potential to promote excellence.
- Boost the quality and capacity of European research by investing in early-career researchers.
- Enhance the effectiveness of actions in the existing "Widening Participation and Spreading Excellence’ instrument, which should be renamed ‘Enhancing Collaboration" and allocate 2.5% of the FP9 budget to it.
- Minimise the risk of biased evaluation of FP9 projects by introducing blind evaluations where appropriate.
The paper will be discussed at the conference "Spreading Excellence, Enhancing Synergies: Perspectives from South-Eastern Europe" in Ljubljana on 14 March 2018.
The Paper can be downloaded here.